Chak Hao Rice gets GI Tag
The Manipuri black rice variety called Chak Hao was recently given GI tag recognition. It has been in use for centuries in the north-east.
Chak Hao is a black rice variety cultivated in Manipur. It has been in use for centuries and is cultivated by traditional methods. It is either cultivated by direct sowing of pre-soaked seeds or by transplantation of seedlings in puddled fields in the wetland regions. The rice is mainly eaten during festivals and is used for preparation of the Chak Hao Kheer.
- It is an aromatic rice variety.
- It is glutinous in nature and dark colored.
- It requires long cooking time- 40 to 45 minutes. This is because of the high crude fibre content and the presence of bran layer.
- It is reported to have medicinal value and is hence used in traditional medicine.
There are many black rice varieties in the world apart from Chak Hao- like the Indonesian black rice and the Balatinaw rice of Philippines. These are glutinous rice varieties that contain one of the highest anthocyanin levels in the bran hull which gives the characteristic dark color to the rice. Upon cooking, the rice turns purple in color.